‘The Great Debate’ on School Reform
Charles Murray, author and fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and educational psychologist David Berliner debated their contrary views of school reform today in an event sponsored by the College of Education and the F.A. Hayek Professorship of Economic History at UMSL. Entitled “The Great Debate:the failure of school reform-whose fault is it, anyway?” featured the opposing views of these two scholars followed by a brief Q & A by the audience. Kiara Breland, staff writer with UM Saint Louis’ The Current Online framed the debate in her article:
[Berliner] suggests public school problems are caused by societal and economic disadvantages. “A child’s ability to learn is based on their surroundings and not their intellectual ability. … Lack of nutrition, domestic abuse, air pollution, all can contribute to a child’s ability to learn and succeed, or not,” Berliner said at the debate. Murray countered that Berliner, like many others, lives in a “fantasy land” and that school administrators and teachers are misleading students when they tell them that they can be anything they want if they try hard enough. He said, “Level of ability is not something we can pretend is equal.”
Photos of the Event:
Video of the Debate
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